MSP Checklist for Customer Data Migration to Microsoft 365

Customer data migration to Microsoft 365

MSPs must take care of every crucial aspect when performing any customer data migration. And since a lot goes into ensuring a successful migration, having a proper customer migration plan helps MSPs navigate through the complexities and ensure no critical task is missed.

This checklist includes all the mission-critical tasks your MSP company needs to perform to ensure a successful Office 365 migration for all customers.

Download and print our free MSP checklist to use it as your go-to reference for performing any customer migration to Microsoft 365.

Free MSP data migration checklist

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1. Check for the Availability of an MSP Program

For MSPs, the first factor to prioritize is checking if the migration vendor offers a dedicated MSP Program. There are many benefits to opting for an MSP program, such as discounted pricing, extended tool license, and eliminating the need to partner with a new migration vendor every time the customers have migration needs.

CloudFuze offers a dedicated MSP Partner Program for MSPs of all sizes and locations. MSPs can avail of volume discounts and access several other benefits with the MSP Partner Program. Contact our Business Migration Team to learn more.

2. Choose the Final User Accounts and Data to Migrate

A foundational step for MSPs to shape the success of any customer data migration is to work with the customer to finalize the user accounts and the size of the data to migrate. This needle mover step helps MSPs get an accurate price quote and ready the source environment for the migration project.

3. Access Admin Account Credentials From the Customers

Admin account login credentials are essential for the test migration and actual customer migration. Therefore, MSPs must gather all the admin account credentials of both the source and destination environments from the customers.

4. Finalize All the Features to Migrate

Another needle mover of a customer migration strategy for MSPs is to finalize the features to migrate, such as transferring sharing permissions, file versions, timestamps, embedded links, shared links, external shares, and in-line comments.

Migrating source environment-specific files (e.g., transferring Box Notes during Box to OneDrive migration) is equally important. MSPs must work with customers to understand their migration needs and finalize the appropriate features accordingly.

5. Finalize the Customer Migration Environment

An important part of migration security is choosing the migration environment. On-prem setup is the best option for highly sensitive customer data migrations, while a cloud-based environment works great for regular migrations focused on keeping the budget in check.

6. Understand the User Role Changes in Microsoft 365

The user roles of the customers’ source environment user accounts may undergo some changes in Microsoft 365. Therefore, MSPs must understand the user role changes and work with the customers to make appropriate changes to the permissions of the source user accounts.

Our article, “Overcoming Limitations When Migrating to SharePoint Online” offers a detailed look at the user role changes that occur when migrating to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business in Microsoft 365.

7. Learn About Microsoft 365 Limitations

Several limitations in Microsoft 365, including unsupported special characters, unsupported specific file/folder names, and unsupported file path length of more than 400 characters, create customer data migration challenges for MSPs.

CloudFuze helps MSPs overcome these limitations with automated functionalities to alter the unsupported special characters and file/folder names.

8. Plan a Realistic Migration Timeline

Working on a proper project timeline that sets realistic expectations is essential to any MSP’s customer migration plan. It is crucial to understand the customer’s deadline and work on a timeline that ensures timely completion of the migration. This timeline planner guide may be of help.

9. Pre-provision Microsoft 365 Accounts

It is impossible to set any customer migration in motion if the new user accounts created in Microsoft 365 are not provisioned. MSPs must ensure all the Microsoft 365 user accounts of the customers are provisioned. Here is an official Microsoft 365 accounts pre-provisioning guide from Microsoft.

10. Create Sites in SharePoint Online and Map Data to the Relevant Ones

A customer migration strategy that focuses on migrating customer data to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business must prioritize the task of creating relevant Sites in SharePoint Online. Mapping data to the appropriate SharePoint Online Sites is equally important.

11. Schedule the Customer Data Migration in Batches

MSPs must also include the task of segregating the data migration into several batches in their customer migration plan. Performing the migration in several batches makes the migration process lightweight, which, in turn, helps complete the migration project on time.

12. Validate Each Migration Batch Promptly

It is crucial to validate each customer data migration batch at the earliest to set the migration of the next batch in motion. This approach helps MSPs speed up the migration and ensure on-time project completion.

13. Lower the Risk of API Throttling

Lowering the risk of API throttling helps MSPs maintain a consistent data transfer throughput. MSPs can use a customer data migration tool, such as CloudFuze, to keep the risk of API throttling at bay. CloudFuze automatically adjusts data transfer speed to prevent the APIs from throttling.

14. Validate the Entire One-time Migration

Thoroughly validating the one-time migration helps MSPs ensure that the entire customer migration is accurate and has no loopholes. Checking data migration reports is the recommended way to validate the migration.

15. Use Comparison Delta for Data Reconciliation

MSPs can check for missing gaps during migration validation using a comparison delta. CloudFuze’s comparison delta feature compares source and destination data to check for loopholes. For example, CloudFuze can compare Google Drive and OneDrive data during Google Drive to OneDrive migration and identify missed data. MSPs can then transfer the missed data to OneDrive.

16. Use Delta Migration to Transfer Incremental Changes

Transferring all the incremental changes made in the source environment during the one-time customer data migration is necessary. MSPs must use delta migration to transfer all the incremental changes to keep the migrated data up to date.

17. Validate the Delta Migration Upon Completion

Similar to one-time customer migration validation, MSPs must validate the delta migration by checking critical details in the delta migration report.

18. Extend the Tool License to Perform Other Customer Data Migrations

MSPs can extend the migration tool license with CloudFuze’s MSP Partner Program to perform other customer migrations. This approach helps in making the migration cost attractive for other customers. Learn more about this in our MSP data migration guide.

19. Use the MSP Program to Streamline T&CS for Other Customer Migrations

MSPs can also use the MSP program to streamline the terms and conditions and other policies for all the customers. This approach helps MSPs shorten the onboarding time and speed up the entire migration project.

20. Decommission the Source Environment

The final checkbox to tick is to help the customers decommission their source environment (local storage or cloud storage) if the customer migration plan is to leave the source environment altogether.

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